Consider the following key findings unearthed in the survey of more than 1,200
finance professionals regarding workplace ethics by Tenbrunsel and Thomas (2015) entitled “The Street, The Bull and the Crisis: A survey of the US & UK financial Services Industry”. These findings quoted below provide striking indications that there has been little or no progress in reducing the out-of-integrity culture in the field of finance.

• our survey clearly shows that a culture of integrity has failed to take hold. Numerous
individuals continue to believe that engaging in illegal or unethical activity is
part and parcel of succeeding in this highly competitive field.

• 47% of respondents find it likely that their competitors have engaged in unethical
or illegal activity in order to gain an edge in the market . . . a spike from the 39% who
reported as such when surveyed in 2013. This figure jumps to 51% for individuals
earning more than $500,000 or more per year.

• More than one-third (34%) of those earning $500,000 or more annually have witnessed
or have first-hand knowledge of wrongdoing in the workplace.

• 23% of respondents believe it is likely that fellow employees have engaged in illegal
or unethical activity in order to gain an edge, nearly double the 12% that reported
as such in 2012.

• 25% would likely use non-public information to make a guaranteed $10 million
if there was no chance of getting arrested for insider trading. Employees with less
than 10 years experience are more than two times as likely as those with over 20 years
experience, reporting 32% and 14% respectively.

• In the UK 32% of individuals said they would likely engage in insider trading to
earn $10 million if there was no chance of getting arrested, compared to 24% of
respondents from the US.

• Nearly one in five respondents feel financial services professionals must at least
sometimes engage in illegal or unethical activity to be successful.

• 27% of those surveyed disagree that the financial services industry puts the best
interests of clients first. This figure rises to 38% for those earning $500,000 or more
per year.

• Nearly one-third of respondents (32%) believe compensation structures or bonus
plans in place at their company could incentivize employees to compromise ethics
or violate the law.

• 33% of financial service professionals feel the industry hasn’t changed for the better
since the financial crisis.

The continuing scandals are therefore strong evidence of the dismal failure of these
explanations to provide any effective access to reducing the counter-productive behavior.

These spectacular failures are, in fact, strong evidence that these explanations of the behavior are in fact false causes. While such false causes appear to provide a satisfying explanation for the behavior, note that they provide no effective access to altering the behavior. In fact, the almost universal assignment of false causes of the behavior that result in these damaging effects (exemplified by what we termed the “scandals”) (for examples see Appendix 1) actually obscures the real source of such behavior. We argue that the real source of this behavior is individuals or organizations being out of integrity (as we have said, their word not being whole, complete, unbroken, unimpaired, sound, in perfect condition). And it is one or more of the eleven factors making up the Veil of Invisibility (discussed fully in Section 3.h) that results in individuals and organizations not seeing the cost to themselves of their out-of-integrity behavior.